The project Learning among Regions on Smart Specialisation (LARS) supports the development and implementation of regional smart specialisation strategies (S3) in the Baltic Sea Region via transnational learning. The regional research and innovation strategies will be developed as regional concepts to support structural change and growth as a joint vision of politics, economy and leading institutions of knowledge, technology and innovation (triple-helix actors). The smart specialisation strategy is the basis for funding by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).
The objective of the project is to improve the institutional capacities of the public sector as the lead actor by enabling S3 partners to jointly identify and close gaps between triple-helix actors and in innovation networks through triple-helix dialogues on findings inside and across regions. The project is expected to strengthen regional connectivity, and thereby enable better integration of territorial development strategies as well as cooperation on improved systems of innovation. The benefit is the transnational dimension, through comparative analysis, which will reveal opportunities and addresses issues which are not obvious from inside the region, leading to improved governance and the strengthening of the public sector's institutional capacity as an innovation driver. The methods and tools are standardised, which enables transnational comparative analysis, the identification of good practices, and dialogue on the improvement of policy strategies between different types of regions across the Baltic Sea. This involves relevant partners in collaborative processes. In this way, the project is expected to improve entrepreneurial discovery processes through networks of interactive learning across the Baltic Sea macro-region.
The Regional Council of Ostrobothnia is the project leader for the consortium of nine international partners from politics, public administration research and economy. The Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions, which is an associated partner, and especially the Baltic Sea Commission will feed the results of the project into the relevant bodies at the international, national and regional levels.
LARS - regions and partners